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Saturday, May 21, 2011

Changes Needed in Operating Traditional "9 to 5" Businesses in 2011 and Beyond

The main overall topic for this blog spot is encouraging self-respect, knowing who we are, where we came from and where we are going.  Spurring on successful endeavors in all the arenas of life.

In this particular blog, I am not exhorting individuals to believe in Self and thus implement this inspiration in their own lives, as much as I am showing how it could be put in action on a grander scale at the work level.

I am an author now.  My dream job.  However, I spent three decades working mostly in high-rises in downtown settings.  So I speak from experience.  If I could have the ear of personnel managers everywhere in those traditionally “9 to 5” jobs, this is what I would say.  Plead even.  Beg, if need be.

  1. Want to get rid of the expense of overtime?  Have your people work overlapping schedules.  Some, the early-bird risers, would opt out for the 6-3 shift.  The alarm-clock-hating group should work the midday shift of about 10-7.  The night-owl sector would take the 2-11 shift.  You effectively have your office “open” from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. which negates the need for overtime—as long as you have each boss paired up to two people, one from two of the three shifts (ideally, one from the early-bird shift and one from the night-owl shift) so that each boss has a go-to person no matter the time of day.  All within the realms of safety.
  2. Want to contribute something to the go-green movement?  This overlapping shift thinking will get more people out of the normal rush-hour traffic, thereby lessening the stress of too many cars on too little pavement for those dreaded two hours in the morning and two again that evening.  Commuting traffic would become spread out.  Especially if more businesses opt to put this into praxis.  Saves gas from all that idling time, improves the health of all because we are not inhaling the fumes from the car in front of us.  Saves time spent commuting, so your employees are away from home less time.  Makes for happier and less sickly coworkers.
  3. Want to give a nonmonetary raise?  Just offer the floating shift idea at the next staff meeting and I guarantee you smiles.  In a big enough company, say twenty or more employees, I dare say that all shifts will be covered just by letting them choose their own shifts.  No mandatory assignments from on high allowed.  Try it yourself and see.
  4. Want another idea for a nonmonetary raise?  Pay your employees to take lunch.  So the above floating shifts would become 6-2, 10-6 and 2-10.  Your employees gain an hour and you are still paying them the same.  They are so thrilled to be going home an hour earlier that they are more productive.  Some may even work through lunch, eating at their desks.
  5. Want happier employees/coworkers?  See all of the above.
  6. Want less absenteeism?  Open a daycare within your company.  You can run it by hiring some new people to manage it daily—good for the present economic slump--or you could offer those positions to a few good employees you lost last year to stay at home with their babies. 
  7. Want more enthusiastic employees?  Figure out a way that each and every one can work from home—at least one day a week.  Try to work it out so that three days a week they can be home working.  What a boon to our planet and its resources, not to mention employees that feel like they have more say in their jobs.
  8. Want less-stressed-out employees?  Go casual dress attire.  (Of course, I do not mean dirty clothes and/or those that expose too much and can lead to jail time.)  I know I feel more comfortable in yoga attire than I ever did in belted outfits with pantyhose and three-inch heels.  You are paying for the use of the brains of your employees.  Show them that.

I offer these ideas as an alternative to the staid routine of old.  Think about it.  Discuss it.  Mold it to fit your business concern.  It is time to update our business models for the twenty-first century. 

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